We all want the best for our students, I wholeheartedly believe that, but let me tell you yoga teachers: there’s a better way. It’s time to really ask yourself: What am I here for?
When students are taught and master fundamental skill sets, are allowed to develop through logical progressions and are empowered to learn the asanas in their own bodies, magic happens.
I’ve seen it time and time again in the self-practice format. People new to yoga, people who have spent their time in group led fitness, people “past their asana prime”. They are learning to stand on their heads. They are building tremendous core strength. They are surprising themselves by what they CAN DO, instead of feeling self conscious about what they can’t. And it’s a beautiful thing to see.
So here’s my call to you asana teachers…
First and foremost, get a teacher and practice asana! It’s in our own practice that WE truly understand and own the postures. Here’s where we do the nitty-gritty work of experimenting with progressions, refining our understanding of the posture and working out how we can share with others.
Next, choose a posture – any posture! You don’t need to reinvent the wheel, there’s plenty of resources out there if you are willing to look. Study up on your physical anatomy bit by bit. Break things down one movement at a time. Practice and track your own progress in the various elements of the posture. When you feel like you’ve laid the groundwork, start sharing!
Start sharing simple progression with your students and really OBSERVE them as they try it out. Listen to their questions, ask them how it feels, watch how they move, become truly invested in the art of teaching, observing and communicating. Gather up all your prep work and your field experience and refine your technique. Keep sharing and don’t be afraid to be wrong.
If you choose to dedicate yourself to teaching asana and sharing yoga with others, why do it any other way? You can do this and your students deserve it!